How to Score in OET Letter ?

How to score in OET Letter?
How to Score in OET Letter?

How to Score in OET Letter ?

OET (Occupational English Language test) is an English language proficiency examination.

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What makes OET different from other English language tests?

OET is preferred by medical professionals because rather than a common English test. OET test is based on clinical communication scenarios which are familiar to the medical and paramedical workers. The exam has 4 modules, reading module, writing module, speaking module, and listening module. The total duration of the OET test is almost 3 hours and 20 minutes.

OET Paper Pattern

The listening module in an OET test takes about 45 minutes. The Listening sub test is divided into three parts. The test evaluates the English listening capacity of the candidates and the accent used in these listening tests are usually in British, American, Canadian, or Australian.

The reading module in the OET exam is for 60 minutes and it is divided into three subsections. Part A is an expeditious reading task that takes 15 minutes to complete. Part B and Part C are careful reading tasks and 45 minutes will be given to complete both are tasks.  Reading sub test marks candidates’ abilities in skimming, scanning, searching, identifying the keyword, and detailed reading and understanding abilities.

The writing module in OET test takes 45 minutes to complete. The task requires the candidates to write a letter that is related to the medical profession. The letter has a specific format to follow and it evaluates the writing skill of the test givers.    

The speaking module takes about 20 minutes to complete and it is an interactive session. The examiner is called the interlocutor and the test will be recorded for assessment. The candidate has to perform two role-play cards each of which will be dealing with clinical scenarios.




  • Understanding the case notes
  • Who is the recipient of the letter?
  • What is the objective ( Purpose) for writing the letter?
  • Marking the relevant information that is needed for patient care.
  • Omit the additional details which it does not contribute to patient care.


OET writing task deals with letter writing and there are mainly three classifications of letter you will find they are :

  1. Referral letter
  2. Transfer letter
  3. Discharge letter

OET candidates will be assigned the role of a medical professional and they have to write a letter addressed to another health care worker. These letters will be based on original clinical scenarios and through the letter, they are required to communicate relevant patient information to give necessary care or further treatment to the patient.

There is only one goal even though there are three types of letter.The purpose of the letter can be different but the way to convey them is the same. With the information from the case note in the Writing Task  the reader prepare the letter with all the relevant information needed for patient management to the recipient. Depending upon the type letter the mode of organization of letter  and the relevant and irrelevant data changes .


  • Transfer Letter

In a transfer letter, the patient is transferred to a nursing home, care home, or another hospital mostly for a follow-up care and assistance. That is, the treatment is not completed it needs to be continued at a new place. In emergencies where the patient’s condition is critical immediate assistance can be requested.

A transfer is mostly written when the patient requires advanced care and expert advice for the management of his/her condition. A transfer letter is mostly addressed to the admitting officer, registrar, charge nurse, doctor, emergency doctor.

  • Referral letter

As the name suggests referral letter is written to refer the patient who is familiar to the recipient. The patient is leaving the particular facility and need further management and care at another space

For example, a patient who recently had his left knee replacement surgery needs daily dressings on the site of surgery. Requesting his post-operative care the Registered nurse is writing a letter to the health nurse at his nursing home. The patient is leaving the particular facility and needs further management and care at another space.

 Common recipients of   Referral letters can be the patient’s GP (General Practitioner), District nurse, Community Health Nurse, Dietitian, Social Therapist, Physiotherapist, occupational and Behavior therapist. In a referral letter  medications, supporting devices or equipment, medical records, and current health condition needs to be addressed to give a follow-up care.

  • Discharge Letter

A discharge letter is written in regard to  a patient who has completed his treatment or is recovering from a condition and is leaving the facility . The patient is leaving the particular facility and needs further management and care at another space.

The discharge letter is mostly addressed to the patient’s GP(General Practitioner ),  District nurse, Community Health Nurse, Dietitian, social therapist, physiologist, occupational therapist.


In OET writing there are two types of cases

Known case

If in the  case note  come across words like

  • Family GP (General Practitioner)
  • His/her GP (General Practitioner)
  • Ongoing care
  • Follow-up care
  • Continuing care

In most letters, known cases will be addressed to the GP ( General Practitioner), nursing home, care home, etc. Most probably it will be a transfer letter or a discharge letter.

Unknown Case

The recipient of the unknown case can be anyone. It can be a doctor, charge nurse, Registered nurse, physiotherapist, etc.

The type of letter can be a referral letter, transfer letter, or discharge letter.


In any writing tests writing in a clear and legible hand writing is very important. As mentioned before OET writing  task is a formal letter and hence  the language used should be formal, neat and the word count should be between 180 -200 words.

To improve your knowledge level and the chance of succeeding in OET would be significantly high if you go along with the daily grammar challenge of Tiju’s Academy. If you want to participate in that, please go to the,

Facebook page: Tijusacademy.

Tiju’s Academy: The Best OET Online And Offline Training Institute In Kerala, India. For more details, Click Here:

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Tiju's Academy

We provide friendly, professionally qualified and experienced trainers who help you to achieve your desired score. We also offer flexible and convenient timings which allow you to study even in your busy schedule. Listening and reading sessions are taken unlimitedly by specially trained tutors; therefore, they explain tips and strategies in each session which help to acquire your required score.

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